yoga teacher trainingBy Amruta Kulkarni 

Actually, I never thought about how much time I wasted being unhappy, until I received guidance from my Guru (Paulji). For most people, there is limited awareness of negative feelings. People carry baggage around for years and never notice it. Friends tire of hearing our pessimism and they stop calling or visiting. Happiness can fill your life completely. Below is one of my favorite happiness quotes.

“As human beings, we all want to be happy and free from misery… The greatest obstacles to inner peace are disturbing emotions, such as anger, attachment, fear and suspicion, while love and compassion and a sense of universal responsibility are the sources of peace and happiness.” – The Dalai Lama 

The question of how to be happy in a perilous world is an ancient one. In a 2010 speech at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit, the Dalai Lama said that a “calm mind is the key to happiness.” Based on his teachings, there are two kinds of suffering in the world: physical pain and mental pain.

While the occurrence of mental pain has decreased with technology, modern life has actually produced more mental pain. Mental pain is caused by fear, anxiety, and anger; this is what creates unhappiness.

Dr. Richard Davidson, a neuroscientist at the University of Minnesota, has worked with the Dalai Lama for the past 10 years – seeking the answer to what creates feelings of happiness and compassion. In 2010, their efforts resulted in the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds. There, more than a dozen scientists continue their studies in the world’s only facility that houses a brain imaging laboratory on one side and a meditation center on the other.

In 2003, studies done at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), used MRIs to analyze during compassion meditation the brain of a monk with over 30 years of experience. The images showed extreme activity in the left prefrontal cortex of the monk’s mind. People who are anxious or depressed usually show more activity in the right prefrontal cortex.

In the “Heart and Science of Yoga,” the author says that we are citizens of two separate worlds: the spiritual and the physical. Sages of all religions have reminded us that earthly things will pass away; only pure consciousness remains. Meditation helps us to distinguish between the two, putting our love and compassion into those things that are eternal.

Yoga meditation is part of every class and it is the process that integrates the mind and the body. The meditative process results in calmness, heightened senses, and senses of understanding about who were are, and how we are connected to the universe. With that comes happiness.

© Copyright – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division

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